Performance Evaluation of Commercial Solar Cookers under Equal Loading Conditions

R. Gayapershad, S.T. Dladla, and M.J. Brooks (South Africa)


Solar cookers, performance testing, tracking, and standardised cooking power


This paper describes performance results for two commercially available solar cooker units, which were tested under summer radiometric conditions at the Solar Thermal Applications Research Laboratory (STARlab) between December 2005 and April 2006. Two cooker types were tested: a low-cost, low-technology Sunstove unit and the more expensive Ishisa box unit. Two of each were used, one tracked and one untracked. All four cookers were simultaneously subjected to performance tests based on the International Standard Procedure for Testing Solar Cookers and Reporting Performance. The Ishisa units boiled water at 100ºC for tracked and untracked conditions, the tracked unit reaching this temperature in approximately 20 minutes shorter time. With the Sunstove unit, a maximum temperature of 88ºC was reached for tracked conditions, which was 2ºC higher compared to untracked conditions. The Ishisa unit, which deploys external mirror panels was found to be more sensitive to non-normal angles of incidence and benefited from regular tracking.

Important Links:

Go Back